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review 2020-05-30 15:28
The Graveyard Book
The Graveyard Book, adult version - Neil Gaiman

by Neil Gaiman

This is a very imaginative story about a baby whose parents are murdered, but he alone of his family escapes into a graveyard. He is adopted by the spirits there and has an unusual life, growing up among the dead.

 

He is called Bod, short for Nobody, and as he grows, his adventures take us through different worlds, including discovering the city of the ghouls. He learns ghostly antics that should be impossible for humans, but it's a Fantasy, so rules of Physics do not apply.

 

The trouble with Gaiman books is that I can't help comparing them to other Gaiman books. I can't say this is as good as The Ocean At The End Of The Lane, but it's a good story, if a little on the young side. It gets quite exciting towards the end. The people who killed his family are still out there and eventually we will learn who they are and why.

 

It's a satisfying read and will definitely appeal to children and YA readers.

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review 2019-05-13 09:41
Bloom County Episode XI: A New Hope by Berkeley Breathed
Bloom County Episode XI: A New Hope - Berkeley Breathed

Title:  Bloom County Episode XI: A New Hope

Author:  Berkeley Breathed

Genre:  Humor / Politics / Satire / Animals / Friendship / Relationship

 

Year Published: 2016


Year Read:  12/28/2017 

Publisher: IDW Publishing

Series: Bloom County Relaunch #1

Source: eARC (NetGalley) and Library

Content Rating:  Ages 15+ (Some Language and Sexual Dialogue)

 

 

Bloom

I would like to thank NetGalley and IDW Publishing for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

Introduction: 

Now, I will admit that I had never read the “Bloom County” comics before, even though I had heard of the series way back in the 1990s. I guess it was because that by the time I started reading newspaper comics, “Bloom County” had all but vanished from the strips and I was not able to read the series then. So, imagine my surprise when I found out that a) the author of the “Bloom County” comics Berkeley Breathed, had decided to bring this comic series back to the pages in his newest comic book called “Bloom County Episode XI: A New Hope” and b) NetGalley has given out this book for readers to check out!

What is this story about? 

After twenty-five years of the “Bloom County” comic strips going out of the pages, the Bloom County gang has finally come back with new adventures and are trying to get used to all the new technology, such as social media and dealing with all the political drama in this modern-day world!

What I loved about this story: 

Berkeley Breathed’s writing: Wow! I never would have thought that there would be a day where I would actually read Berkeley Breathed’s legendary comic strip “Bloom County” and now that day has finally come! Berkeley Breathed has done a brilliant job at writing this comic book series as the humor is sharp and witty and I really enjoyed the way that the satire on the modern-day era is handled in this series as I found myself laughing at each jab at the current state of politics. Now, I will admit that I do not normally read many books or comic books that deal with politics because most of them tend to be a bit too one-sided for my tastes. However, Berkeley Breathed was able to make the political satires in this comic be more hilarious and memorable as it managed to poke fun at both liberals and conservatives and that really amused me! I really liked the fact that the comic is written in a way where you do not have to read the previous “Bloom County” comics to get the characters or the setting. The fact that the characters felt the same way as they did decades ago except for the fact that society has changed over time, really made reading this comic a pleasant experience for me! I also loved the way that Berkeley Breathed wrote each character, especially Bill the Cat and Steve Dallas as all the characters were hilarious and entertaining to read and I especially enjoyed their interactions with each other, especially with how Steve usually acts like a jerk towards the other characters, but is still on friendly terms with them.

Berkeley Breathed’s artwork: Berkeley Breathed’s artwork is hilarious to look at as all the characters are drawn in a semi-realistic way and yet, the images of Opus the Penguin and Bill the Cat are much more cartoonish than the human cast and they really stand out in the artwork.

Bloom

What made me feel uncomfortable about this story: 

For anyone who does not like language and sexual dialogue, this comic strip does have some language such as the constant usage of the “a” word and also there are some sexual dialogue littered throughout the comic, mainly coming from Steve Dallas himself as most of his story arcs involve him trying to get a date with various women.

Final Thoughts: 

Overall, “Bloom County Episode XI: A New Hope” is a fantastic continuation of the “Bloom County” comics and anyone who is a huge fan of the “Bloom County” comic series will surely enjoy this graphic novel!

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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review 2019-05-13 08:34
It Takes a Cat Burglar by Cailin Briste
It Takes a Cat Burglar - Cailin Briste

Title:  It Takes a Cat Burglar

Author:  Cailin Briste

Genre: Contemporary Romance / Interracial Romance

Year Published: 2017

Number of Pages:  81 pages

 

Date Read: 12/14/2017

 

Series: A Thief in Love Romance #1

 

Publisher:  Hot Sauce Publishing

Source:  eARC (Book Unleashed)

Content Rating:  Ages 18+ (Some Strong Language and Sex Scenes)

 

 

Cat

I would like to thank Book Unleashed and Hot Sauce Publishing for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

After I had read “The Frog Prince” from Book Unleashed, I just had to request another book to review and lo and behold, I found an interesting romance book called “It Takes a Cat Burglar” by Cailin Briste and I was quite interested in this story!

The story starts off with a young woman named Darcelle Lebeau who is training to become a great cat burglar and she is training under a mysterious man who goes by the name Matou. What Darcelle does not know is that the mysterious Matou is actually Sebastian St. Croix, a rich man who is also a cat burglar. After Sebastian observes Darcelle’s skills for a while now, he had decided to make Darcelle his partner in crime. But first, Darcelle must complete a mission that involves trying to save Sebastian’s niece Cheyenne from the clutches of a corrupted businessman. During Darcelle’s training though, Sebastian and Darcelle start falling in love with each other and they will have to keep their hands off of each other in order for the mission to go as smoothly as planned.

Wow! I was quite impressed with this story that was written by Cailin Briste since this would be the first romance novel I had read that dealt with cat burglars falling in love! I loved the fact that this story is centered on cat burglars because it makes this book so unique to read, since in most romance books, the characters I had read were either dukes, duchesses, businessmen and normal people. I also enjoyed the way that Cailin Briste wrote both Darcelle and Sebastian as they were pretty interesting characters, because of the fact that they are both cat burglars, and yet, you get to see them slowly bonding with each other, despite the fact that they both want to control the other. I like the fact that both Darcelle and Sebastian are shown as being strong protagonists as with the case of Darcelle, she refuses to let anyone run her life and she wants to be more independent, especially after the life she had to go through with her overbearing mother and her sister Cassie. I also liked Sebastian because even though he struts his authority throughout the book, it is clear that he has Darcelle’s best interests at heart and is willing to allow her to do whatever she desires. I really loved the way that Cailin Briste wrote the sexual scenes between Sebastian and Darcelle as they were hot and sexy and I was literally fanning myself whenever the sexual scenes would show up!

The reason why I gave this book a four-star rating was because I felt that because of the book’s short length, there was not enough character development going on with the characters. I wanted to learn more about Sebastian’s backstory and how he became a cat burglar since he seems a bit too mysterious for a character and I wanted to learn more about his character. I also felt that Darcelle and Sebastian’s relationship with each other fell into the “insta-love” category and there was not enough build up to their romance with each other that made me actually buy into how well developed their romance was.

Overall, “It Takes a Cat Burglar” is a cute story about thieves falling love that many fans of romance novels will enjoy!

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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review 2019-05-13 03:29
Herding Cats: A "Sarah's Scribbles" Collection by Sarah Andersen
Herding Cats - Sarah Andersen

Title:  Herding Cats: A "Sarah's Scribbles" Collection

Author:  Sarah Andersen

Genre:  Humor / Life / Art

 

Year Published: 2018


Year Read:  12/13/2017 

Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC 

Series: Sarah's Scribbles #3

Source: eARC (NetGalley)

Content Rating:  Ages 16+ (Some Language and Suggestive Humor)

 

 

Herding

I would like to thank NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

4.5 stars
 


Introduction: 

I have been hearing so many good things about Sarah Andersen’s popular “Scribbles” series and yet, I was not able to pick up any of her books when they were coming out. Well, now I finally got the chance to pick up one of her books through NetGalley, which is the third book in the series called “Herding Cats” and I was quite amazed by the humorous antics shown in this book!

What is this story about? 

In this volume, Sarah shows her experiences in both real life and the internet life through her artwork (or scribbles as they are known as) to relate to the readers such as trying to get through one page in a book only to keep on reading the book even after you promised yourself to just read one more page or seeing some progress happen in the United States only for the 2016 elections to cause mayhem afterwards.

What I loved about this story: 

Sarah Andersen’s writing: Wow! I was quite amazed by how Sarah Andersen wrote this graphic novel series! I loved the way that Sarah Andersen relates her observations about real life both through her life and through the internet in a humorous yet thought provoking way as I found myself agreeing with a majority of her thoughts about real-life. I really loved the part about the 2016 elections as it was stated in one of the panels about how politics was making progress before 2016 and then the 2016 elections hit and there was chaos and mayhem! I was also impressed with the fact that this graphic novel series is similar to Allie Brosh’s series “Hyperbole and a Half” as both series have the authors relating their own lives through their artwork and both are done in a hilarious way! I also loved the fact that Sarah Andersen provided some advice at the end of the book about how to deal with the pressures of both the real world and the internet community and how if you encounter some struggles in your life, just keep on creating things that you love (in Sarah Andersen’s case, it is continuing to draw her comics no matter how hard things get in both the real world and the internet community).

Sarah Andersen’s artwork: Sarah Andersen’s artwork is truly hilarious to look at as the characters are drawn in a squat comic book fashion and I especially love the images of Sarah herself as she is drawn as having spiky hair and is wearing a black and white striped shirt. I also loved how Sarah Andersen conveyed some of the situations in real life through the images such as the state of politics being shown as a person with an American flag shaped head and then the next panel shows lots of people fighting each other in a fiery landscape after the results of the 2016 elections.

Herding

What made me feel uncomfortable about this story: 

The reason I took off half a point from the rating was because I felt that the story telling was a bit disjointed at times and it was hard for me to really follow what is really going on in the story, even though this is meant to take on different aspects of real life and put them in comic book format.

Final Thoughts: 

Overall, “Herding Cats: A Sarah Scribbles Collection” is a truly hilarious graphic novel to read, especially if you want to see a more humorous take on real life!

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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review 2019-05-13 03:08
The Deal of a Lifetime by Fredrik Backman
The Deal of a Lifetime: A Novella - Fredrik Backman

Title:  The Deal of a Lifetime

Author:  Fredrik Backman

Genre: Fantasy / Short Story

Year Published: 2017

Number of Pages: 65 pages

Date Read: 12/9/2017

Publisher: Atria Books   

Source:  Purchased

Content Rating:  Ages 15+ (Themes of Death and Parental Abandonment)

 

 

Deal


“The only thing of value on Earth is time. One second will always be a second, there’s no negotiating with that.” 

Now, I have been hearing so many good things about Fredrik Backman’s works for a while, especially “A Man Called Ove” and “Bear Town.” Even though I haven’t read either book yet (do not worry, that day will come), I still managed to stumble upon one of his books called “The Deal of a Lifetime” and man, was I totally blown away by this book!

The story starts out with a father telling his son the story about how he met a little girl in the hospital, who has cancer and about how he had actually taken a life away from someone. Well, that is not the full story: it turns out that the father had a dark past where he abandoned his wife and son for a life of fame and fortune many years ago. But, when the father ended up in the hospital and he find out that the little girl who was in the hospital because of her cancer, might not live long enough to experience life, the father decides that he must do something to ensure that the little girl survives, even if it means sacrificing his own life!

Wow! This book is simply amazing for one short novella! Fredrik Backman has done an excellent job at writing this story as I was seriously hoping that the father in the story would find some way to help out the little girl who has cancer, while trying to appreciate the importance of life and family. I loved the fact that Fredrik Backman focused on developing the father character in the book as it shows that the father went from thoughtlessly abandoning his family to pursue a life of fame and fortune to trying to sacrifice his own happiness to ensure that the little girl survives and it made me really connect to his character throughout the story. Despite the fact that this novel is extremely short (only sixty-five pages long) Fredrik Backman did a great job at writing out a full story about a father’s journey to becoming a more selfless person and it felt like the story really fleshed out the father’s character.

The only problem I had with this book is that the narrative tends to get a bit confusing at times, especially with the fact that the father is telling the story, but he is also telling the story to his son. Because of this, the story tends jump from the father’s point of view to the son’s point of view at the drop of a hat and it could confuse some readers about what is really happening in the story.

Overall, “The Deal of a Lifetime” is a truly fantastic story about redemption and learning about the importance of family and happiness that fans of Fredrik Backman’s works will enjoy!

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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